Specters of Freedom

DVD Launch
2018

DVD edition: Specters of Freedom – Cinema and Decolonization(2018)

– Co-editor (with Tobias Hering).
Booklet +6 digitalized films produced in connection with the African Liberated Movements of 60’s and 70’s.

This project is the continuation of Specters of Freedomscreening program of 2012, at Kino Arsenal, Berlin.

The DVD project is co-produced by ARSENAL – Institut für Film und Videokunst, Arsenal Filmgalerie 451 and Goethe-Institut, with collaboration of the Cinemathèque de Algers, the Portuguese Cinematheque and the Mozambique Film Institute.

The six films on this DVD edition are powerful examples of how cinema and filmmaking have engaged in the struggle against colonial oppression and in the momentous task of decolonizing a world marked by centuries of European hegemony over large parts of the Global South. If “Specters of Freedom” refers to the spectral and unruly nature of all films, particularly when they are taken out of an archive and brought back to life, the title also suggests that the colonial past keeps haunting our present. The political and poetic verve of these films – publicly released here for the first time on DVD – is anything but outdated.

DVD 1
MUEDA, MEMÓRIA E MASSACRE (Mueda, Memory and Massacre) Ruy Guerra, Mozambique 1979–80, 75 min
ESTAS SÃO AS ARMAS (These Are the Weapons) Murilo Salles, Mozambique 1978, 59 min
REASSEMBLAGE Trinh T. Minh-ha, USA 1982, 40 min

DVD 2
LA ZERDA ET LES CHANTS DE L’OUBLI (The Zerda and the Songs of Forgetting) Assia Djebar, Algeria 1982, 59 min
DEIXEM-ME AO MENOS SUBIR ÀS PALMEIRAS (At Least Let Me Climb the Palm Trees) Joaquim Lopes Barbosa, Mozambique 1972, 71 min
MONANGAMBEEE Sarah Maldoror, Algeria 1969, 15 min

Bonus material 44 page booklet (English)

DVD infos
Languages: Arabic, English, French, Makonde, Portuguese, Xironga
Subtitles: English
Region code: code-free
System: PAL b&w, color
Format: 4:3
Running time: 311 min
Sound format: DD 2.0
Price: 16,90 €

MUEDA, MEMÓRIA E MASSACRE (Mueda, Memory and Massacre)
One of the first filmmakers to be invited to shoot in Mozambique after independence was Ruy Guerra, who was born in the country but became well-known as one of the central figures of the Brazilian Cinema Novo. Although his film MUEDA, MEMÓRIA E MASSACRE, which was shown at the Berlinale Forum in 1981, is the only Mozambican film in the Arsenal archive, it is a clear milestone. It shows a piece of anti-colonial reminiscence work, a public reenactment staged by non-professionals of the massacre of Mueda (1960) carried out by the Portuguese. The event was regarded as triggering armed resistance in Mozambique in subsequent historiography and was remembered at regular intervals even before independence by means of popular reenactments. Ruy Guerra shot MUEDA with a clear documentary interest in this theatrical form of commemorative practice. Its subsequent marketing as the “first Mozambican feature film” provided an initial taste of the interpretational conflict that was to follow, which resulted in a complicated history of censorship.

ESTAS SÃO AS ARMAS (These Are the Weapons)
The agitprop film ESTAS SÃO AS ARMAS by Murilo Salles was edited together from archival images and formed one of the first works to be produced by the newly founded film institute in Maputo.

REASSEMBLAGE
Trinh T. Minh-ha’s debut film REASSEMBLAGE was shot in Senegal and also places image and sound in opposition, primarily as a means of deconstructing the stigmatizing, ethnological visual archive of Africa we all have in our heads.

LA ZERDA ET LES CHANTS DE L’OUBLI (The Zerda and the Songs of Forgetting)
For LA ZERDA ET LES CHANTS DE L’OUBLI, Assia Djebar and her co-author Malek Alloula spent half a year in the Pathé and Gaumont film archives watching footage shot by French documentary filmmakers between 1912 and 1942. Their montage sifts through these “images of a deadly gaze” for the reality they conspicuously elide, for the resistance that has retreated “behind the mask”. The soundtrack blends together poetry, recitations, and experimental music into a polyphonic swan song to colonial violence.

DEIXEM-ME AO MENOS SUBIR ÀS PALMEIRAS (At Least Let Me Climb the Palm Trees)
One of the few anti-colonial films to be produced in Mozambique before independence is DEIXEM-ME AO MENOS SUBIR ÀS PALMEIRAS by Joaquim Lopes Barbosa. Shot in the style of a Russian avant-garde film, it tells the story of the suffering of and revolts carried out by a gang of rural workers. The film was banned by the Portuguese censors at the time and has only recently been given a new reception in Portugal.

MONANGAMBEEE
“Monangambeee!” Passed from village to village, this cry struck terror in the hearts of even Angola’s bravest. Men, women and children took flight and sought protection in the bush. The cry translates as “white death”, and signified certain deportation with no return. The cry once accompanied the arrival of Portuguese slave traders and in the 1960’s it was used as an identifying sign and signal to gather for the People’s Liberation Front. A woman visits her husband in prison. When departing, she promises him a “Complet”, but the guard betrays him by informing the prison director. Based on a misunderstanding over which language the woman speaks, and the meaning of the word, it comes to interrogation and torture.

  • 2021

    Restitution and reparation in post-conflict identity

    Maputo/ Mozambique

    Online Debates + exhibition
  • 2021

    Sala colonial – Colonial room

    Museu de Lamego, Portugal

    Research project/exhibition
  • 2021

    Archival Assembly in Berlin

    Berlin, Germany

    Festival
  • 2021

    The Silence of the Earth/ O Silêncio Da Terra – Museu Nogueira da Silva / Laboratório de Paisagens, Património e Território LAB2PT

    Braga, Portugal

    Collective exhibition
  • 2021

    Direito à informação | Right to information, Galerias Municipais | EGEAC, 2021 (upcoming)

    Lisbon, Portugal

    Book launch
  • 2021

    Latitude on Air – episode on Decolonizing Film Archives

    Radio Netzwerk Berlin
    on 88,4 mhz Berlin and 90,7 mhz Potsdam.

    Radio show
  • 2021

    Associação de Amigos da Praça do Anjo invites Catarina Simão.

    Cooperativa dos Pedreiros. Porto

    Screening + Talk
  • 2020

    Living Archive Cairo / Virtual MRI Residencies

    Cimatheque-Alternative Film Centre - Cairo, Egypt.

    Mentorship
  • 2020

    Olhares do Mediterrâneo – Women’s Film Festival 7th Edition

    Cinema São Jorge + ISCTE-IUL (Lisbon) | FILMIN Portugal (online)

    Jury
  • 2020

    Mueda Memória e Massacre in Il Cinema Ritrovato

    IL CINEMA RITROVATO, Bologna

    Screening + introduction
  • 2020

    Reopening of R-HUMOR exhibition

    Galeria da Avenida das Índias, Lisbon

    Reopening of exhibition
  • 2020

    Reworking images as counterpart of today’s landscape – Interview part #1

    FOTOTA

    online publishing
  • 2020

    Effects of Wording at Ideias no Escuro

    ideiasnoescuro.com

    online screening
  • 2020

    Mueda 79 at Ideias no Escuro

    ideiasnoescuro.com

    online screening
  • 2020

    Berlinale Forum/ Forum Expanded

    Silent Green Kulturquartier, Berlin

    Talk
  • 2020

    Conversations R-Humor

    Galeria Avenida da Índia, Lisbon

    Public Program
  • 2020

    R-Humor

    Galeria da Avenida da Índia, Lisbon

    Exhibition
  • 2019

    A Meeting With the Mozambique Film Archive

    Ar.Co, Lisbon

    Artist Talk
  • 2019

    Memory, Diversity and Identities: Challenges for Intercultural Relations in the 21st Century

    Beira Interior University, Portugal

    International Seminar
  • 2019

    Documentation and Art Practice

    Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation's Art Library

    Conference
  • 2019

    Sonhámos um país – Camilo de Sousa and Isabel Noronha

    Culturgest, DocLisboa

    Film Presentation
  • 2019

    Tudo passa, excepto o passado

    Goethe Institute Portugal / Culturgest

    Talk
  • 2019

    Mutantes #3: encontro com Catarina Simão

    Salamanca Fine Arts School

    Seminar / Artist Talk
  • 2019

    Paixão Escancarada – Vavy Pacheco Borges

    Cinemateca Portuguesa

    Book Presentation
  • 2019

    Reframing the Archive

    Arquivo Fotográfico do Porto

    Conference
  • 2019

    Archive-Making: Talk with Catarina Simão

    Jan Van Eyck Academie, Maastricht

    Artist Talk
  • 2019

    Critical Entanglements: Colonialism, Anthropology and the Visual Arts

    Museum of Anthropology - University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa

    Seminar
  • 2019

    Cinema, Leituras e Contextos

    Social Sciences Institute - Lisbon University

    Seminar
  • 2019

    La lutte de libération du point de vue des images. Les images du point de vue de la lutte de libération. Notes sur les films Djambo (2016) et Effects of Wording (2014)

    Gulbenkian Foundation, Paris

    Artist Talk
  • 2019

    Descolonizar os museus: isto na prática?

    Social Sciences Institute - Lisbon University

    Conference
  • 2019

    Critical images: (Dis)comfort of Images and Injuries of History

    Filmhuset, Stockholm

    Talk
  • 2019

    Respect and Recognition (Respekt und Anerkennung Internationale Tagung)

    Magdeburg, Germany

    Conference/ Screening program
  • 2018

    Mueda em excesso: o massacre de Mueda na história e no cinema

    Mondlane University, Maputo

    Seminar
  • 2018

    Exodus Stations #4

    Quai Branly, Paris

    Art Residency Presentation / Artist Talk
  • 2018

    Exodus Stations #4

    Paris

    Publication
  • 2018

    Effects of Wording

    Berlin

    Screening / Talk
  • 2018

    Djambo (2016)

    Nampula

    Screening
  • 2018

    Exodus Station #4

    Museum fur Völkerkunde, Leipzig

    Publication
  • 2018

    Exodus Station #4 – La Volonté des Archives

    Collège d'études Mondiales, FMSH

    Art Residency Presentation / Artist Talk
  • 2018

    Effects of Wording

    MASP - São Paulo Art Museum

    Collective Exhibition
  • 2018

    Djambo (2016)

    Espaço Campanhã, Porto

    Screening / Conference
  • 2018

    Exodus Station #4

    Quai-Branly Museum

    Art Residency
  • 2018

    Exodus Stations #4

    Grassi Museum

    Art Residency
  • 2017

    Cinema, fotografia e vídeo nos arquivos de Mozambique: reapropriação como alternativa à preservação de imagens em perigo de desaparecer

    Beira Interior University, Covilhã

    Seminar
  • 2017

    Effects of Wording

    Hangar, Lisbon

    Screening / Talk
  • 2017

    A memória involuntária dos arquivos: o caso do Mozambique Institute Project

    National Ethnology Museum, Lisbon

    Seminar
  • 2017

    Untimely Colaboration

    Calouste Gulbenkian Museum

    Seminar
  • 2017

    Effects of Wording

    Cinemateca Portuguesa

    Screening
  • 2017

    Effect and Wording

    CEA, Maputo, Mozambique

    Screening / Talk
  • 2017

    Djambo (2016)

    Centro Cultural Português, Maputo

    Screening / Debate
  • 2017

    Djambo (2016)

    Social Sciences Institute - Lisbon University

    Screening / Talk
  • 2017

    Mueda 79

    Wurttembergischer Kunstverein, Stuttgart

    Collective Exhibition / Installation
  • 2017

    Djambo

    Mozambique/Portugal

    Film
  • 2017

    Five minutes with Ruy Guerra

    Glasgow, Scotland

    Video / Exhibition
  • 2017

    Mueda, Memory and Massacre – Ruy Guerra

    Africa in Motion Film Festival,

    Conference / Film Presentation + Debate
  • 2016

    Ntimbe Caetano

    Installation
  • 2015

    The Mozambique 
Institute Project

    Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia Madrid

    Exhibition
  • 2015

    17 Introductions for the Mozambique Institute

    Book
  • 2015

    Uhuru

    Bratislava

    Exhibition
  • 2015

    Effects of Wording

    National Oleksandr Dovzhenko Centre, Kyiv, Ukraine

    Installation / Collective Exhibition
  • 2015

    Assambleias (Assamblies)

    RE.AL "O Que Um Livro Pode", Lisbon

    Performance
  • 2015

    20 Frames for Politics of Friendship

    Lisbon

    Online Magazine
  • 2015

    Uhuru

    Book
  • 2015

    On Pedagogy

    Moderna Museet, Malmo, Sweden

    Screening
  • 2014

    The Mozambique Institute Project

    Museo Nacional Centro de Arte, Madrid

    Installation / Collective Exhibition
  • 2014

    Mueda 1979 / Mozambique Archive Series (2013)

    Alhóndiga, Bilbao

    Installation / Collective Exhibition
  • 2014

    Politics of Friendship

    Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid

    Performance
  • 2014

    Effects of Wording

    Lisbon

    Film
  • 2013

    MUEDA 1979

    Film
  • 2013

    Staging decolonization: a cinema in denial of his own present

    Alhóndiga, Bilbao

    Conference
  • 2013

    These are the weapons (2012)

    Núcleo D'Are, Maputo, Mozambique

    Installation
  • 2012

    Specters of Freedom

    Berlin

    Film
  • 2012

    A Forma Que Imita O Seu Assunto

    Lisbon

    Radio
  • 2012

    These Are The Weapons

    Video-installation
  • 2012

    Off Screen Project

    Andaluz Contemporary Art Centre, Seville, Spain

    Exhibition / Screen Program
  • 2012

    These are the weapons

    Kino Arsenal, Berlin, Germany

    Installation
  • 2011

    Ghost – Book

    RE.AL, Lisbon

    Book
  • 2011

    Ghost

    Lisbon

    Artistic Residency
  • 2011

    Off Screen Project

    London, UK

    Exhibition / Talk / Conference
  • 2011

    Off Screen Project

    Africa Cont./ Carpe Diem, Lisbon

    Collective Exhibition
  • 2010

    Off Screen Project

    Casa das Artes, Vila Nova de Famalicão

    Collective Exhibition
  • 2010

    Off Screen Project

    Manifesta 8 - European Bienal of Contemporary Art, Murcia, Spain

    Collective Exhibition
  • 2009

    Restos, rastos e traços

    Atelier Real

    Art Residency / Exhibition / Talk
  • 2009 - Now

    Off screen project – The Mozambique Film Archive

    Exhibition